The Broward Center for the Performing Arts provided an online arts integration training program for Broward County educators who will be expected to share their learning and lead their colleagues in this powerful initiative.
With online learning at the forefront, the Virtual Arts Integration Institute, held via Zoom, focused on the integration of dance, music, theater and visual arts strategies into online instruction of the core curriculum.
“Studies have shown that integrating the arts into the wider classroom curriculum improves students’ overall academic performance, creative and critical thinking, self-confidence and social development,” said Broward Center Director of Education Sharon Brooks. “We felt it was important that our arts integration resources could be adapted to work with online learning and knew this training would be extremely beneficial to teachers.”
For more than a decade, the Broward Center in partnership with the School Board of Broward County and the Broward Cultural Division have presented annual conferences for teachers to demonstrate how the arts may be integrated into other subjects in the curriculum. Participants in this summer’s Institute had previously attended arts integration workshops and have used integration strategies in their face-to-face instruction.
Led by Arts Integration Professional Development consultant Dr. Liz Droessler and Broward Center’s artist-in-residence Tammy Holder, the four-day online program provided strategies that increase engagement, make connections across the curriculum, help students think critically, build communication skills and provide students alternative ways to show what they know in an online platform. Participants were asked to create an arts integration lesson plan to be delivered online for each core content area, a training action plan to implement at their schools, record an arts integration activity for students and lead an online arts integration workshop with grade-level peers.
During this past school year when schools were conducting distance learning, the Broward Center made arts integration materials available to Broward Public School teachers to aid them as they created online lessons. Lessons to Go, a variety of art lessons for grades K-5 integrated seamlessly into Canvas, the online portal that allows students and teachers to connect. In addition to lessons for students, the Broward Center provided professional development opportunities for teachers to learn more about how to integrate art into education.
The Broward Center has made a significant impact on the lives of students and with educational programming which reinforces classroom learning and is aligned with the core curriculum. Since opening its doors, the Amaturo Theater has been a designated “outside resource classroom” for Broward County schools and in a typical season 75 percent of all elementary schools in Broward County attended free SEAS performances in a program which has been recognized with national awards from the National School Boards Association and the Kennedy Center Alliance for Arts Education.
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The Broward Center 2019-2020 season is presented by the Broward Performing Arts Foundation. AutoNation, Bank of America, Brightline, Canteen, Cleveland Clinic Florida, Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau, JetBlue, MasterCard and Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center are proud sponsors of the Broward Center.